“BE a woman of substance. Be a real woman. It is difficult to break down a real woman because she will learn from her mistakes, gather her strength form her struggle, and overcome the obstacles courageously.”…every. single. year.
A new year is rolling in. You’ve been reflecting on the past year; it’s hardships, your regrets, the things you didn’t do, and the things you did. You made mistakes this past year, and did a couple of really wonderful things. But now, it’s time to welcome the new in with open arms, and shed off the old. This year has been a battle for good and bad, as every year is, and now you’re ready to hit the road hard, and move on.
“I’m going to start working out every single day this new year, get in the best shape of my life, stop eating desserts, run a lot more, start going for longer walks, fit into those super cute butt sculpting Lululemon pants, learn to love vegetables, have a healthy relationship with my bathroom scale, back away from the nutella jar….and…really buckle down on my fitness!” Says everyone on New Years Day.
We all make resolutions. Some of us share them with friends and family, and some of us even take a piece of paper and write our New Years plans in list form and tack them to our bedroom walls. I know I do. One of the most popular and common New Years resolutions is to get in shape, workout more, and become a healthier person. Right? Cause, “My New Years resolution is to sit around and eat more potato chips”….said no one ever.
But let’s be completely real here. Magazines write up hundreds of cover page articles about fitness resolutions, companies create new workout items and supplements that sell during the first couple winter months of the year, and you buy a new gym membership and commit to going, every single day. And thennn? YOU GO….for one or two weeks, life begins to happen…and you forget about your resolution and commitment, once again.
Welcome to my life. Last year I made a list of 35 resolutions and promises, and I fulfilled 3. So how do you actually keep the resolutions you’re about to make in order to avoid major pitfalls? Or how can you make new challenging resolutions that go beyond “going to the gym everyday?”
1. AVOID ABSTRACT RESOLUTIONS: Instead of promising yourself “I am going to lose weight this year” or “I am going to always go to the gym” promise yourself more specific fitness endeavors. For example, instead of promising myself that “I would build more muscle” last year, I made a resolution to backsquat 200 lbs. by December. In order to do that, I had to work hard and build strength over the course of a year, which also built muscle and stronger legs. If you want to lose weight, specify how much. Maybe write down that you will strive to lose 2-3 lbs a month. If you want to make it onto your varsity sport team at school, reflect on everything it will take to get there. Do you need to work on your dribbling, punting, block starting or endurance level to make varsity? If the answer is yes, THAT is a specific resolution.
2. SHARING IS CARING: Cause sista, it’s one thing to secretly pursue and break resolutions you’ve made, but it’s another to tell your friends, or your sexy guy friend about it and then not fulfill your commitment. You can put things off time and time again, but when other people are involved and looking forward to you reaching your goal, you’ll push a lot more. This does not mean that other people are the reason for your motivation and dedication, nor does it mean that you can’t quit something in case of disappointing others; it means that if your friends and family are involved and on board with your commitments, you’ll possibly want to stay on track.
3. DON’T WORRY BOUT A THING: Cause every little thing is gonna be alright. Sometimes you simply can’t control things. If you set a goal to lose weight this year and get sick or injured for a long period of time, you need to let it be. When you get better, don’t give up, but start again and fight for the same goal you made at the beginning of the year. Stuff happens, life happens, and the stress of not being able to “control” certain situations can lead to an “I’m just going to stop” attitude. Don’t stop…fight.
4. YOU HAVE A CLEAN SLATE, EVERY SINGLE DAY: So why can you only set goals on New Years?! If you think about it, it’s kind of an unfortunate problem. You set a goal on New Years day because you feel like it’s an opportunity to start over again, and then suddenly it’s September and you haven’t done anything, so you figure that you have to wait until next year to once again start fresh. Um…no. You wake up everyday to a new day, a new morning, and an entirely fresh slate. You have 365 days to set new goals and commitments, so if you think you can use the “I have to wait until the 1st” excuse……say WHAT?! Sorry…but no.
5. COLD TURKEY IS A NO GO: Say you really want to quit smoking this year, or drinking, and look forward to losing 30 pounds. Immediately stopping your old habits, just because it’s a new year, will result in slipping back to them. If you need to lose weight, don’t just stop eating because you think you need to reach a set number by this December. Everything is a process…fitness and health, are a process. Respect that it takes times, and respect yourself by easing into your new lifestyle.
MISS STRONG’S RESOLUTION MOTIVATION:
A lot of us struggle with motivation and dedication. A lot of us get overwhelmed a few months into the year, and do not progress to change. It’s a vicious cycle of promising and hoping for change, and slipping back into our old habitual lifestyle. Change is hard, and incredibly scary. We have a burning spark inside to grow and become fitter, healthier and better, yet we do not approach change in the correct way. We look at magazines of perfect bodies in spandex and sports bras and think that by starting a new detox pill diet, or eating salad from Jan-Dec, we will be happy and reach our goal a lot sooner than if we stayed consistent and slow. In order to get fitter and healthier, you need to understand that looking good is only one small aspect of health. You need to feel good inside emotionally and mentally too. Stop with excuses, impatience and those attitudes of surrender, and make sure that you fulfill the true beauty of a woman this year; strong, motivated, and inspiring towards yourself and others.
Women do not need to stand on the sidelines as men enter the challenges and battle of the new year to come; women are fighters and goddesses of strength. You are a goddess. And you, are a goddesses of strength. I don’t care what your body looks like, what you think your body looks like, where you come from, who other people think you are…don’t standby this year, but fight for improvement and change. Fight for goals. Fight for what you deserve in your life, and this new time to come. Don’t fear change, and don’t fear strength. Inside, you possess more strength than you ever thought possible. Reach inside, build your strength, and do what needs to be done for you. You are your only enemy, in your own battle, and instead of surrendering, it’s time to triumph.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.” You are. You are powerful beyond measure, and this year it’s time to dissipate fear, overcome holdbacks, and toughen up…BECAUSE YOU ARE A WOMAN, AND YOU CAN.
We promise to help motivate you, if you promise to help motivate us.
Miss Strong is incredibly happy to be entering it’s second year of publication, yet we are even happier that all of our goddesses are hoping, and aiming for a new year of personal health, growth, peace, love, and change. Let’s do this. It’s go time. You are the goddess of the New Year. So here is to strong women. May we know them, may we be them, and may we raise them in the new year to come. HAPPY NEW YEAR!
-Leala Luna McGinnis
Owner and Publisher, Miss Strong